Joe Bruce & 2nd Avenue – Joe Bruce & 2nd Avenue [1987]

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Country USA          Style WestCoast AOR

Rating 87/100

Band Members
Joe “Bean” Esposito – Lead/Backing Vocals, Bruce Sudano – Lead/Backing Vocals, Dann Huff – Guitars, Nathan East,Joe Chemay – Bass, Michael Omartian – Keyboards, Erich Bulling,Marcus Ryle – Synth Programming: , John Robinson – Drums, Bob Conti – Percussion, Gary Herbig,Kim Hutchcroft,Jerry Hey – Horns, Donna Summer,Dara Bernard,Mary Ellen Bernard,Portia Griffin – Backing Vocals

Tracks
01. We Can Have It All, 02. Something Tells Me (Into Something Good), 03. No Way To Win, 04. Save The Love, 05. Some Things Never Change, 06. The Terms Of Love, 07. The Message Is Clear, 08. Powerful Girl, 09. America (What’s The Price You Pay), 10. I Found Love

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Profile Joe-Bruce is a studio project by two heavy-weights of the music industry: Joe Esposito and Bruce Sudano. Both were part during the late ’70s / early ’80s of the vocal group Brooklyn Dreams (which supplied backing vocals on the classic debut Franke And The Knockouts album). Esposito is also well known as a soundtrack guy (Flashdance, Foxes, Staying Alive, Thief Of Hearts, Karate Kid) and his colaboration with Giorgio Moroder. And who are the ‘2nd Avenue’? No-one than the super session monsters Dann Huff, Nathan East, Michael Omartian, Bob Conti and more.

First track “We Can Have It All” is just a killer soft-AOR melodic gem. The golden chorus is pure mid-eighties AOR heaven, and Dan Huff’s solo a fine demonstration of his mastery. “Something Tells Me (Into Something Good)” is really ‘something good’, a cool L.A. westcoast track complete with tasteful keys and horns. “Save The Love” has a classy smooth breeze while “Some Things Never Change” is a melodic semi-ballad with a great bass & rhythm guitar that reminds me the more commercial Gino Vanelli.

“The Terms Of Love” returns to the classic AOR in a style similar to David Roberts and Robbie Patton. Great keyboards on this one. “The Message Is Clear” has a poppy-Lite AOR vibe, very radiable and contagious. The drums are more compressed here than the rest of the album. “Powerful Girl” sounds very early eighties, a soundtrack-style track with a magic chorus and nice guitars. On the ballad “I Found Love” the duo pay tribute to their origins, this is a vocal-based song with great harmonies.

Production is first class and all sounds clear and polished to the extreme thanks to the great work of Michael Omartian. This is a ‘tie & jacket’ album, elegant and sophisticated. “JOE-BRUCE & 2ND AVENUE” only was released on CD and distributed in Germany in limited quantities, being auctioned today with bids above U$S 300. Many fans of west coast music are looking forward to a reissue of this great album….

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Joe Bruce & 2nd Avenue - Joe Bruce & 2nd Avenue [1987], 8.5 out of 10 based on 4 ratings
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